Dow Futures 105 Pts Higher; Oil Rises on Colonial Pipeline Attack

By Peter Nurse – U.S. stocks are seen opening mixed Monday, while crude prices rise in the wake of a cyber attack on the largest U.S. gasoline pipeline.

At 7:05 AM ET (1205 GMT), the contract was up 105 points, or 0.3%, traded 3 points, or 0.1%, higher, but dropped 36 points, or 0.3%.

The and closed at record highs Friday, and these indices are expected to open higher Monday as investors seek out value stocks following Friday’s unexpectedly weak April , which cooled fears the Federal Reserve may be forced to tighten policy to curb an overheating economy.

However, the tech-heavy is seen opening lower, with the megacap tech stocks struggling to move higher from already advanced levels despite generally strong quarterly earnings. 

Additionally, the benchmark edged up toward 1.60% as traders brace for a busy week of auctions.  

Elsewhere, oil prices strengthened and gasoline futures hit a near three-year high Monday after a ransomware attack caused Colonial Pipeline, which provides nearly half of the U.S. east coast’s fuel supply, to shut down its entire system on Friday, stoking expectations of gasoline shortages along the U.S. East Coast.

Some smaller lines were restarted Sunday, but Colonial has given no timeline for the restart of its main pipelines.

futures traded 0.5% higher at $65.22 a barrel, the contract rose 0.6% to $68.69, while gasoline futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange rose 1.4% to $2.1562 a gallon, climbing to the highest level since May 2018 before paring gains.

The surge in energy prices is sure to add to the inflation debate, with the April CPI report due on Wednesday. This is forecast to show prices posting more gains, with the seen rising 3.6% on the year, a sharp jump from March’s 2.6%, and considerably above the 2% level the Federal Reserve usually seeks to limit price rises to.

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In the corporate sector, the generally successful first-quarter earnings season is gradually winding down, but there will still be updates Monday from Duke Energy (NYSE:), Air Products (NYSE:) and Marriott International (NASDAQ:), the last of which posted a loss for the quarter as the pandemic again hit bookings.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:) and Amazon (NASDAQ:) could also be in focus following reports that the U.S. Department of Defense is rethinking its $10 billion ‘JEDI’ contract for Cloud hosting, the implementation of which is being delayed by litigation from Amazon.

Cybersecurity stocks, such as FireEye (NASDAQ:) and SolarWinds (NYSE:), are also in demand on the back of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack.

Additionally, rose 0.5% to $1,839.45/oz, while traded flat at 1.2163.



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